South African-headquartered Bowmans entered into an alliance agreement with Nigerian firm, Udo Udoma & Belo-Osagie (UUBO), building on their long-standing existing ‘best friends’ relationship.
The agreement, which came into force in September, consolidates both firms’ existing collaborations for mutual clients, and adds Nigeria to Bowmans’ extensive range of alliance partners, enhancing its regional coverage of pan-African legal issues; plus giving it insights into Africa’s most populous nation; in one of the continents’ largest economies.
UBBO has 15 partners and 72 associates working from offices in Nigeria’s three main commercial centres, Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt as well as having an associated firm in Ghana, adding to its West African credentials.
For UUBO, their clients will gain the benefit of deeper and stronger collaboration in sectors and markets in which Bowmans is well regarded, whether East African jurisdictions, such as Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda, or Bowmans’ South African base, as well as Mauritius, a key offshore centre for African interests.
The development extends the Bowmans brand to nine African countries, the firm having opened in Malawi and Zambia in June 2020, following its previous expansion in October 2019 to Mauritius and Ethiopia.
“I’m delighted with this development,” said Robert Legh, Bowmans’ chairman and senior partner, noting UUBO was recognised by the legal media as one of Nigeria’s elite law firms, adding “Our alliance with a firm of the calibre of UUBO is very good news for our respective clients.”
“There are strong existing synergies between us - in services, culture, values, ethics and professionalism”, says Aniekan Ukpanah, managing partner at UUBO, in response.
Ukpanah said: “As a firm, UUBO actively seeks to respond quickly and effectively to the evolution and rapid changes of the economies and markets in which we and our clients operate and do business. The alliance gives us the opportunity to tap into the Africa-wide capabilities and presence that Bowmans offers.”
Legh concluded, “Nigeria has significant potential, but is also a complex jurisdiction from a legal and regulatory perspective. It will be good to be able to work with the team at UUBO to better serve our clients, not only in Nigeria, but elsewhere on the continent.”
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